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Biden meets with Chinese President Xi Jinping; discusses Russia, North Korea and Taiwan

Picture Courtesy: DW

US President How Biden had a conciliatory meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping. It was the first in-person meeting between the two superpower leaders since Mr Biden took office. The pair discussed North Korea and Russia's invasion of Ukraine at the talks in Bali, a day before the G20 summit on the Indonesian island.

President Biden said "it's difficult to say that I'm certain that China could control North Korea". But he also told Mr Xi that China had "an obligation" to dissuade Pyongyang from engaging in another nuclear weapons test.

Taiwan was only one of the topics that was discussed in the meeting. Claimed by Beijing, the self-governed island counts the US as an ally, and has always been a thorny issue in US-China relations. A readout to Chinese state media on Monday said Mr Xi had stressed that Taiwan remained "the core of China's core interests… and the first red line in US-China relations that cannot be crossed”.

President Biden also said that he does not believe that there will be a cold war between US and China. He said in a press conference, “I absolutely believe there need not be a new Cold War. I have met many times with Xi Jinping and we were candid and clear with one another across the board. I do not think there is any imminent attempt on the part of China to invade Taiwan. I made it clear we want to see cross-strait issues to be peacefully resolved and so it never has to come to that. And I'm convinced that he understood what I was saying, I understood what he was saying.”

President Biden also raised concerns about human rights issues in China, including the treatment of the Uyghurs in Xinjiang, Hong Kong and Tibet.

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